The Chinese New Year pudding called nian gao, or tikoy as we call it in the Philippines, is iconic of the festivities. Sweet and sticky foods are supposed to bring family unity. The round shape symbolizes unending prosperity. It is symbolically offered to the Kitchen God so that he will present a favourable report to the Emperor of all Gods.
Although it can be eaten as is, I prefer it dipped in egg and pan fried. I like also dipping it in sugar though it actually is sweet enough. Modern versions have flavours like pandan. Change the flavour of the liquid (water) to vary the flavour.
Tikoy is usually given away as a present during Chinese New Year. This home made version has four inexpensive ingredients and takes less than an hour to make.
2 1/2c. glutinous rice flour
1 c. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1 3/4 c. water
Prepare and pre-heat a steamer.
Whisk all the ingredients together until free from lumps.
Strain into a lined and generously greased 8" diameter round tin and steam on medium heat for 35-45 minutes. Any container will do but I chose a flat one so that it cooks faster.
It is ready when it is all bubbly on the surface and a toothpick inserted on the center comes out clean.
It will subside as it cools. Leave to cool in the pan, then refrigerate.
This can be eaten as is or sliced, dipped in beaten eggs with a pinch of salt and pan fried.
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